Invisible Planets: Contemporary Chinese Science Fiction in Translation

Editor and author Ken Liu (The Grace of Kings) cautions Western readers to avoid the temptation of interpreting the stories in the anthology Invisible Planets as mere metaphors for contemporary Chinese political discourse. Liu's translations of 13 short stories and three essays on Chinese science fiction are not to be taken as representative of all China has to offer the field of genre fiction, either.

Instead, Invisible Planets delivers a fascinating glimpse into the work of seven astute practitioners of science fiction writing. Liu Cixin, nine-time winner of the Chinese Galaxy award and recipient of the 2015 Hugo Award for best novel, contributes two stories and an essay on the relatively new acceptance of SF as a literary force in China. One of his stories, "Taking Care of God," is a vivid parable exploring the origin of humanity, as well as its current self-centered state.

Xia Jia, who holds China's first Ph.D. in science fiction, contributes three short stories, including the elegiac and haunting tale of a world left to machines in "Night Journey of the Dragon-Horse," based on actual mechanical sculptures that exist today. Her versatility and mastery shines forth with each shimmering world built, each short work bursting with speculative intelligence.

Ken Liu translates the array of radiant stories and insights in Invisible Planets, and provides short author introductions and essays to help Western readers access work they might not otherwise consider. These powerful stories, written with superb skill and full of riveting concepts, have universal appeal. --Rob LeFebvre, freelance writer and editor

Powered by: Xtenit